The crisis between Doha and Riyadh has strengthened Qatar and weakened the Gulf alliance
According to Sheikh Mohammad ben Abderrahmane al-Thani, the country and its people are "stronger". He denies a condition of "isolation", now Doha is "a strong international partner". The purchase of a Russian defence system risks opening a new confrontation front with Riyadh. Gulf Cooperation Council mediation proves useless.
Doha (AsiaNews / Agencies) - The political, diplomatic and economic crisis between Doha and other Gulf nations, particularly Saudi Arabia and Qatar, has in fact "strengthened" the emirate, according to the Foreign Minister of Qatar, Sheikh Mohammad ben Abderrahmane al-Thani. He also underlined that the country today is more competitive on the international scene and more solid internally.
"A year later - the minister wrote on Twitter - Qatar and its people are stronger". Among the main actors of the worst crisis experienced by the Gulf monarchies, al-Thani adds that "there is too much talk of imaginary victories and isolation" of the country. In reality, after a year the reality "bears witness to the opposite", because "it has become an international weight partner".
For almost a year, Qatar has been embroiled in a serious political, diplomatic and economic crisis with the other Gulf countries, led by Riyadh. Since 5 June, Saudi Arabia, the Emirates, Bahrain and Egypt have cut off all relations with Qatar, accused of financing terrorist groups active in the region.
According to some analysts and experts the clash between Qatar and Saudi Arabia is really over links between Doha and Teheran, which recently confirmed its economic and diplomatic support. There is also the opposition within the Sunni Islam between Doha and Abu Dhabi.
The conflict has isolated the small emirate in the Gulf area, bringing it closer to the Islamic Republic, Turkey and Morocco. Many goods and products - even those subject to the government ban - enter Qatar through Kuwait and Oman.
Ministry spokesman Louloua al-Khater yesterday announced the possibility of new talks in September to try and unblock the tense situation. However, he warns, "this will depend on the countries of the bloc". Doha "is open to dialogue", but at the same time the government will continue to negotiate with Moscow on the purchase of the Russian anti-aircraft missile defence system S-400. This project which seems destined to heighten tensions with other countries in the area. In response, the leaders of Saudi Arabia have appealed to France to intervene in the Kremlin and block arms sales. Otherwise the Wahhabi kingdom says it is ready to undertake a military action against Qatar.
In a situation of growing tension, the first victim of this crisis seems to be the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC), born in 1981 on the impetus of Saudi Arabia and the support of the United States, in response to the Iranian revolution of the ayatollahs of 1979. The block is made up of six nations: Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, United Arab Emirates, Kuwait, Oman and Qatar.
In these 12 months there have been very harsh exchanges of accusations and threats within the two opposing blocs, which risk collapsing an institution that has been in crisis for some time. So far, the fragile mediation of Kuwait, which seeks to preserve its unity and avert another conflict in a region already battered by too many wars, has proven fruitless. And the recent Saudi threats of an attack on Doha certainly do nothing to ease the tension.